How to Benefit From Multimedia in E-learning!

Kwiga
Reading time: 10 minutes

Digital content plays a huge role in online learning now. Over the many years in the e-learning sphere, it has become even more perfect, colorful, and adapted for different screens (PCs, smartphones, tablets). Moreover, full-fledged educational platforms have significantly improved the user experience when taking online courses and the availability of e-learning. This has dramatically influenced the definition and genre diversity of educational content.

Multimedia is one of the most powerful tools for engaging students in online courses. It helps keep students interested and motivated and can also be a valuable way to provide extra information or clarification. Therefore, such content can help make online courses more fun and exciting.

Let's look at the top techniques for using multimedia content in online courses that optimize learning efficiency and make courses visually appealing.

Why Include Multimedia in Your Online Course

It is not surprising that multimedia elements are one of the main types of content in online learning. They allow you to familiarize learners with the material in full detail and immerse them in the educational process. Moreover, a person perceives 95% of the information presented in an engaging format (for comparison, the percentage of memorizing information from a text is 10%).

For example, different types of content are most effective when used for the following purposes:

  • To create a model of behavioral or interpersonal skills.
  • To show good and bad examples of performing tasks.
  • To highlight the importance of a particular concept or point of view.
  • When more engagement is needed than pictures or text can provide.

Most of all, interest is caused by interactive elements that reach the audience directly. It allows the student to turn from a passive listener into an active participant in the educational process.

How To Choose Content for an E-course

Millions of people worldwide have access to a wide variety of media tools. They not only increase engagement but also make e-learning courses more effective. Creators of training videos and seminars can add different types of visuals - from Motion Design to interactive presentations. Beautiful and engaging elements can be outstanding if you adhere to specific rules. Let's consider the main rules for selecting multimedia content for e-courses.

Use the Total Potential of Multimedia To Maximize Student Engagement

Diversity plays a vital role in getting new knowledge. Therefore, be sure to choose several types of multimedia elements at once for your online course, and this allows a wide variety of student needs to be met.

For example, those who perceive information better through hearing will significantly benefit from audio recordings (e.g., lectures and background music). At the same time, visual lovers will appreciate interactive games and videos in which you have to answer the lecturer's questions by choosing the correct answer. However, don't overdo it with the selection of components. After all, multimedia materials should follow the main content, improve the perception of information, and not become a top point of the program.

Thus, educational platforms offer convenient tools for working with multimedia. You can easily add images, video, and audio to training modules.

Choose Relevant Images That Are Not Copyrighted

Images that represent learning material or relate to the topic of an online course also play a significant role. High-quality pictures can interest students and make modules visually attractive.

When looking for new images, you should pay attention to those not protected by copyright. In this case, you will not be faced with the need to pay royalties.

It is also worth noting that learning modules shouldn't be too cluttered with images. Otherwise, students will be distracted from the lesson material. Pay attention to images that reflect the essence of the material. For example, you can add photos of sales areas in interactive scenarios, increasing learning and making the e-course more valuable.

Popular services, Depositphotos and Shutterstock, often provide stock images. However, high-quality photos are also available on free photo websites (like Pixabay or Unsplash).

Offer Photos To Explain Difficult Points

If you need to present a rather complex topic, offer photos to illustrate the lesson's material. For example, you can show diagrams about algorithms of internal computing processes or a drawing of a specific mechanism. If you cannot use full-fledged images, translate them into another visual representation (diagram or flowchart) or create a text description.

In terms of usage rights requirements, be sure to use non-copyright photos. In this case, you will not face legal problems and the need to pay royalties.

Use Videos for Lectures, Training, and Seminars

No online course is fun without videos. Video tutorials with a remote teacher and even a course author will be a great addition to your e-course. Students will be more interested in seeing a living person than constantly changing pictures and diagrams. Therefore, such content will benefit both listeners and the owner of the educational platform.

By integrating video into online training, you can:

  • get immediate feedback on how much you engage students in the learning process and keep their attention;
  • better evaluate whether they have learned the information or not;
  • follow the lesson immediately if they have trouble understanding any part of your material.

It is best to conduct video tutorials in real-time. Moreover, they can also be saved to a recording for later use. For example, you can create a short introduction video and use it repeatedly to attract new listeners.

Further, you can make videos more interesting and interactive thanks to new technologies. They increase student engagement and course completion rates.

Make Educational Content Easier To Read With Slideshows

Slideshows have been used for decades in classical education. Therefore, they quickly found their place in online courses in more advanced and exciting forms. Slideshows allow you to integrate quite a few interesting elements without distracting students. As a result, you will receive an interactive course that will relieve students of cognitive overload. The reason is quite simple: the listener can fully understand the material on one slide before moving on to the next.

Use Sound To Offer More Interactive Experience

Like visuals, sound plays a huge role in eLearning creation. Audio recordings of lessons or even background music increase the interactivity and attractiveness of e-learning. Thus, students find themselves more involved in the learning process, especially for background sounds related to the lesson material and sound scenarios.

Of course, such content should be of high quality. So it's better to spare your money for professional voice recording. Also, look out for background music on free sites (e.g., Bensound, MixKit, SoundCloud) where thousands of excellent quality tracks are available. Another good place to look for music scores is the YouTube Audio Library.

However, don't use audio recordings throughout the entire lesson. So, students get tired over time and become distracted from the lesson. Plus, you probably don't want to retell all of the material orally.

Integrate AR, VR, Simulation, and Gamification

New technologies make life easier for ordinary people and owners of educational platforms. Augmented reality, 3D and 4D graphics, and VR technology make learning more exciting and fun. In addition, e-learning creators are increasingly focusing on game mechanics, rating systems, and multimedia content modeling.

All of these approaches make learning a fun adventure where people learn as they play and play as they learn. In addition, innovative methods ensure that students are fully engaged in the learning process and retain them for as long as possible.

Consider Technical Limitations When Integrating Multimedia Content

Another vital factor to consider when using multimedia content is technical limitations and student requirements. Here is a list of questions to be answered:

  • Will students take the course separately, or will they be trained on the job?
  • What technology is used to display multimedia elements? It is worth noting that Adobe has ended support for Flash technology. So you need to look for alternatives (JavaScript, Silverlight).
  • What is the level of technical training of the target audience? Will students be able to work correctly with multimedia elements?

After answering these questions, you can add pictures, video, and sound per the requirements of the educational platform and students. This is why the high-quality functionality of the e-learning platform will allow you to adapt the content to the needs of students.

What Is the Recommended Duration of Multimedia Content

Online course creators always try to make learning as exciting and fun as possible. Therefore, they are increasingly exploring the potential of multimedia in e-learning. There are several key points regarding the length of the content.

  • Almost all designers and methodologists agree that short training modules are more popular and effective. The reason is simple: the trainees are motivated to complete the training. Therefore, the optimal duration of a video course is from 15 to 30 minutes. This number is based on the results of the psychological research of students.
  • There is also an opinion that it is necessary to use several interactive materials simultaneously for more excellent attractiveness in an electronic course. Interactive charts, videos, tests, and assignments have the highest engagement rates. In addition, it is necessary to answer the questions "What do the students need to know?" and "What is the best and most effective way to explain the topic of the course?"

Therefore, breaking a 45-minute video into two 30-minute training modules is much easier. At the same time, it is crucial to correctly divide the video into segments that attract the most attention and provide deep immersion in the topic of the e-course. This will allow students to draw the correct conclusions.

Conclusion

As you can see, there are significant benefits to using multimedia content in online learning. It allows you to expand the functionality and increase the value of knowledge, and multimedia can also boost course completion and student engagement rates.

Whichever media you choose in your course, be sure to provide students with easy access to them. One way to do this is to place the multimedia resources in a separate location so that students don't have to search for them every time they want to revisit the material. You also need to decide what type of content is best for your material. You can easily integrate multimedia with your online courses with these nuances in mind.

We hope this article was helpful to you. If you still have questions about integrating multimedia in e-learning, leave them in the comments below. We will definitely answer them, and we will consider the most interesting ones in our following articles!